Heroes and heroines, they said.
You must mean superheroes! said I.
Yes. Capes, tights, wearing your underwear on the outside. Tortured pasts, emotional baggage, the backstory from hell. Saving the girl (or guy!) and defeating the villain, all while looking really, really cool.
Kind of like a romance novel, really. Well, except for the underwear-on-the-outside part. Then again, some of those crazy costumes can be hot. And superheroes do have a lot in common with romance heroes. For instance, consider these guys:
They look very cool. And what romance reader wouldn't want to be swept off her feet by handsome, ditzy Thor, or genius-billionaire-playboy-philanthropist Iron Man? Even The Hulk has his own geeky charm.
Still, the Avengers do have their own species of grunge. They're ambivalent heroes. If you prefer the chiseled, ultra-handsome, good-guy type, there's always this dude:
Superman is a white-knight hero. He's never really troubled by darkness. He always knows what's right. And these days he's even got the underwear-on-the-outside thing sorted.
If you prefer your romance heroes dark and disturbed, then you can't go past this fellow:
Black rubber. Deep growly voice. Obsession with creepy small animal. This dude is seriously troubled - and what heroine wouldn't want to be the woman who saves him from himself?
Yeah, I confess I'm a Batman kind of girl. And many of the romance books I enjoy feature the same kind of dark, disturbed hero. Which just goes to show that it doesn't matter where you get your stories, right? Graphic novel, action movie, romance book - it's all the same.
So who's your favourite superhero or superheroine?